Compassion

Compassion From Grant Bartlett, PhD Our Lives are impacted by Family, Friends, Teachers, Preachers, Colleagues and the Global Community at large. They have inspired me to be much more than I believed I was capable of doing. They demonstrated that we don’t settle for style, but we succeed with substance. We must maintain our integrity and compassion in this less than compassionate world. All people are important. Celebrate them. Befriend them. Love them. Robert Kennedy, using a quote from George Bernard Shaw in the “Celebration of Life” stated: ”There are those who look at things the way they are and ask Why? However, others look at things that never were and ask “Why Not”? Compassion for ourselves and others is essential for the survival of the Community of Man / Woman. I believe, based on lifelong experiences, that five, twenty-five, fifty or one hundred years from now, it will not matter what our bank account was, the style of the house we lived in, or the make of car we drove. However, I believe the world may be truly more positive and accepting because we, as individuals and communities, positively impacted, celebrated, supported, and contributed to someone else’s Life. We must be totally involved in living the Life we were given and creating the circumstances we want. Learn from the Past, Cherish the Present, and Look positively to the Future. Remember, Life is a one-way Street. There is no turning back. Play the cards we are dealt. There is a Maxim I learned years ago that has been a guiding light. I do not remember the source, however, I remember the substance: Risk more than others think is safe! Care more than others think is wise! Dream more than others think is practical! Expect more than others think is possible! I have also learned that those who bring Sunshine to the lives of others, cannot keep it from themselves. We must be catalysts and builders. We must remember that three of the most important words in the English language are “May I Help”? We must also remember that what we have done for ourselves alone dies with us. However, what we have done for others will live forever. As Chaucer so aptly stated: “We are all pilgrims journeying to Canterbury individually. Why not walk together and tell each other our stories”? Yes, and we must all seek Adventure. As I…

The Wisdom Within Adventure

The Wisdom Within Adventure From Paul Bell My previous two articles on excitement and learning have a very powerful element in common; adventure is a way to experience both of these and may be very close to the core of excitement and a stimulus to learning. Adventure is much more than just being entertained. It involves risk. It can be physically, psychologically and financially challenging. There is no certainty of outcome. If you view life with an adventurous spirit, the possibilities for excitement are endless. Writing a book, starting a business, falling in love, battling with an unexpected storm, giving birth, climbing an unknown peak, taking a meditation retreat - throwing fear to the wind and jumping feet first. If you view life’s experiences as adventurous, they will be. If you are in control of the adventure, there are many possible life-enhancing benefits. Your decisions and actions are affecting the outcome. This will create the feeling of ownership and empowerment which can give you a more confident, decisive, self-aware character. It can give you a wonderful sense of freedom. A freedom from the careful, balanced, predictable world you have left behind. It can make you feel very alive, present, focused just on the moment, on the now. This level of emotional involvement will give you powerful lasting memories, for you to relive or to tell as stories. Adventurous exploits and stories have raised the bar for humanity. The mythical stories of the past are filled with adventure and civilizations have grown with these stories supporting their cultural beliefs. The human capacity for adventure has created the world we know. Much of our history and progress is that of adventurous discovery. Humankind has a natural, innate adventurous spirit. It is not just environmental or competitive pressure that drives us forward, but a curiosity leading to discovery, the exciting possibility of gaining new information and awareness. Most of us cannot resist just peeping around that next corner. We were not just pushed out of Africa or across the Bering Sea; we did not have to go to the moon. For an adventure to succeed rather than become a misadventure there are some clear guiding principles. Don’t construct an expected world and deny the contrary evidence. Accept things that are not what you want them to be. Keep an independent mind and spirit and be open to all possibilities. Remember that an adventure…

The Learning Connection

The Learning Connection From Paul Bell "TO LEARN OR NOT TO LEARN, THAT IS THE QUESTION" It is obvious that readers of this newsletter believe in learning but what do we do with that learning? We live in a world with an exploding mountain of knowledge and a vast array of possibilities to tap into this mountain. It is important that we keep up. Our innate curiosity has taken us beyond the formal years of education, but has it expanded our ability and passion to learn? A powerful truism is that “you can only learn what you allow yourself to learn” and that prevents many of us from pushing the boundaries of learning. For example, are we willing to learn from something we did not expect to learn from? The idea that “even a fool can teach you something” can be a threat to our ego and not a temptation to learn. Luckily, we are surrounded by opportunities to learn. If our formal education has done more than just impart knowledge, we should now have a deep desire to learn and a belief that we are good learners. We all have our preferred learning style, but the important part is that we should continually seek to learn. Any mistake should be seen as not just a nuisance but a chance to learn. Working with or just observing others can teach us so much if we are just open to the possibility. Learning a creative technique, such as solving a problem by reading a totally non-related book and then making creative links between the non-related pieces of knowledge, can open a cascade of creative connections. Many experiences are an excellent chance for experiential learning. As Confucius said, “Tell me and I will forget, show me and I may remember, involve me and I will understand”. From a prescribed exercise on a training course to a random experience that you have, there is a huge opportunity to learn. If we pay attention to the experience as a chance to discover, reflect and then experiment, we will learn. A committed learner will even create some experiences so that they can learn from them. If we have become emotionally involved with the experience it will be easier to remember. William Blake’s idea that, “the true method of knowledge is experiment” can reward all of us if we are willing to push for it. Learning…

Time and Tide Wait For No One

Time and Tide Wait For No One From Grant Bartlett, PhD During these endless hours, days, weeks and months of COVID-19 induced social distancing, self-isolation and chaotic politics, other than Friends and Friendships, I have been reflecting on Time. It is our most important commodity, and it is constantly diminishing in spite of all of our attempts to control it. My awareness of its significance was first revealed to me by an elderly (86) fisherman who was my boatman during my career as a Marine Geologist. I was 24 and managing a multidisciplinary marine program in the four Atlantic provinces. I arrived in our Nova Scotia base camp following a hectic pace in Newfoundland. We went to a small bar and I stated that “I needed another 24 hours in a day if we were to complete the Summer program. We chatted for a while, and as we were about to leave, he placed his hand on my shoulder and said: “Grant, my boy, there are 24 hours in a day. You get 24 and I get 24. It is how EACH of us USE them”. Wiser words were never spoken. I have dispensed those words of wisdom to hundreds of students, family, relatives, colleagues and friends. One of my nieces (who is now a senior executive with Michelin) was so moved by the advice that she wrote a poem titled TIME. TIME I don’t have the time we often say I said it myself just the other day A very wise man sat by my side And, the words he said will be my guide There are twenty-four hours in every day It’s how you use them is all he would say Use them wisely to do all that you can And your Life will go according to plan You can do anything that you want to do The only one holding you back is you Don’t look at anything and say that you can’t These were the wise words of my Uncle Grant Follow your dreams and don’t ever let go Where you might end up, you’ll never know There will be highs & lows & pain & sorrow But you will be a stronger person tomorrow His advice was wise and from the heart Where we end up is not where we start We all control our own destiny And, just have to be the best we…

New Year Resolutions

New Year Resolutions From Grant Bartlett, PhD With the Western New Year already in full swing, and the Lunar New Year just having started, we thought it would be a good time to listen to Grant’s thoughts about this important topic. I have several views on New Year Resolutions and New Year Celebrations. The concept was first celebrated by the Babylonians 4000 years ago. However, their new year was celebrated in March with the planting of new crops and wishes for a successful future. I have made hundreds of “Resolutions” with a modicum of success. The success rate universally is alleged to be 15%. We state a Purpose (Resolution). We announce it with Passion (Enthusiasm). And, our Perseverance (Fortitude) fails us. Now, this would be a very interesting Mind-Gut Research Project. Where does Perseverance reside? New Year Resolutions according to Westcott are “a triumph of hope over experiences”. They are a way to quantify what we wish for ourselves. They are a method of quantifying personal dissatisfactions and erasing errors of the past year. Moreover, they are now mainly a focus of self-improvement such as lose weight, stop smoking, exercise more, volunteer more, etc. We now use our NYR’S as a cleansing ritual of self-assessment and repentance that demands personal honesty and reinforces humility. My first and foremost “Resolution” for 2021 is to lend a “hand-up” to ensure, as Emerson so aptly stated, that one life has breathed easier because I cared. Just reflect on the impact if every individual gave a “hand-up” to just one other person. “What a wonderful world it would be”. Discard Meism and celebrate Weism! My second Resolution for 2021 is to consistently practice all areas for self-improvement. One must be strong for one’s self to be strong for all others. And, as we “take a cup of Kindness yet, let us all pour a cup of Kindness for our Fellowman. The Heart that Gives ……gathers. In fishing terms: We are the line, the lore the rod and more. May 2021 be a “Best Ever” Year! Grant Bartlett, PhD is a Serial Entrepreneur, Global Traveler, Consummate Reader, Mentor to Millennials, former Hockey Team owner of the Calgary Flames who has experienced a myriad of Careers in Government, Academia and Industry. Grant has mapped the Rocky Mountains and explored the Ocean depths. He believes that when you reach the far horizon there will be another. Never…